VW Beetle TDI

beetletdibeetletdi Member Posts: 1
edited April 2014 in Volkswagen
When I purchased my 2000 Beetle TDI, I was getting 45 mpg. I complained to the dealer, the ads stated 50mpg. I drive many miles, that was one of the selling points. The dealer told me that the engine had to break in. I have almost 30,000 miles, and I am now getting 40-41mpg. Any suggestions or feedback would be welcomed.


  • kjclowkjclow Member Posts: 29
    What kind of tranny did you get? I have a 5 speed that gets 43 - 46 around town. I have gotten close to 50 on the highway. Best trick is to under shift. I try to shift around 2000 rpm. Seems a little underpowered, but the TDI doesn't care. Check out www.newbeetle.org for more info.
  • tdibugmantdibugman Member Posts: 5
    KJCLOW is right - shift around 2000 rpm. I am just turning 65,000 miles, and manage between 42-48 in mixed driving, although the highway driving is usually in heavy NJ rush hour at 75-85 mph. In highway driving, cruise set at 65, I usually can get 60-62 mpg, driving to NC. My range brings me from Atlantic City to Nags Head, NC. The times when I really push it, I've dropped as low as 40, but never below that. Even at 40 mpg, its hard to complain when you consider the level of performance the engine gives.
  • h2ovwh2ovw Member Posts: 1
    Can someone give me a tip or two. I am excited about the TDI mileage and I'm stoked to buy one. Everyone says, "But it's a deisel." Is that bad. I just love the mileage. And I like bugs, always wanted one. Thinking about buying online. I live in a mid-sized town. Prices aren't low enough at our dealer. Should I venture into the e-buying thing for this gem?
  • kjclowkjclow Member Posts: 29
    I have owned my tdi beetle for a year now. The only issue about owning a diesel is learning to undershift for the maximum milage. I try to shift around 2000 rpm. No problems finding fuel, but then I am only about five miles from the interstate. Check out www.newbeetle.org for some other beetle fanatics. That should help to settle any fears on ownership.
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    If you do the math correctly, I still think you need to own a TDI for about 100,000 miles to break even with the gas models. Higher initial cost, less of a discount from list usually, the need to use synthetic oil, fuel system servicing, timing belt replacement costs at more frequent intervals, etc., eat into the mpg savings.
  • moparbadmoparbad Member Posts: 3,870
    If you have an 80's Oldsmobile diesel it is a bad thing.
    Current technology diesel is very good. The diesel in VW's is TDI which is direct injection and turbocharged. The torque is comparable to 1.8T motor which provides excellent drivability.
    The smoke and diesel odor of older style diesels is eliminated.
    The need to use synthetic oil is a non-issue. ($20 for synthetic oil every 10,000 miles, so what) Maintenance cost is comparable to gasoline VW's, some services are higher and some lower.
    The big cost for the VW diesel is having the timing belt changed. The interval for this service is 40K for automatic and 60K for manual. Typical cost is $350 to $450 to have the timing belt changed.
    40 to 50 MPG, lower cost of diesel fuel, and excellent torque, diesel is an option well worth your consideration.
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    Not to help build your case, but VW changed the interval on the automatic timing belt to either 55 or 60k. Suspect you will be adding oil several times on the way to 10k so you understate the cost. Timing belt replacement quotes in northern VA dealers is around $600. 20k fuel system servicing is $150. The TDI may be the cleanest diesel yet but it is still not clean. Stand behing the exhaust and breathe the particulates. If it was clean, it would pass NY and CA emissions standards. Not knocking it...I loved my Rabbit Diesel. Just trying to state facts.
  • moparbadmoparbad Member Posts: 3,870
    VW did NOT change the interval on timing belt on automatic equipped cars to 55 or 60K. Your info. is incorrect, I have access to TSB's and there is not one that changes the interval, the owners manual calls for 40K replacement, the dealer states 40K, I have the dealers maintenance schedule for the TDI, V6, VR6, 2.0 and 1.8T and it lists replacement at 40K for auto TDI. I wish it was 60K.
    $600 for timing belt, I was just quoted $285 for timing belt change on TDI at VW dealer, I stated $350-450 as this was the average cost at dealers in Midwest. $600 for 3 hours labor and $85 in parts is absolutely ridiculous.
    Why do you suspect that oil is going to be added several times on the way to 10K? I (and others I know who own TDI's) do not add oil between oil changes. Even if you did have to add oil you are out another $4.00, Ouch.
    Maintenance is free for first 24K and 24 months. What "fuel system servicing for $150" are you referencing? Drain Water Separator, change oil, change oil filter, change fuel filter, and check condition of timing belt are the TDI specific maint. at 20K, and it is FREE.
    The brake fluid is to be changed at 24 months regardless of mileage and this is common to all the VW's and it is free at 24 months regardless of whether you have 18K or 45K miles.
    The TDI does pass NY and CA emissions. The TDI is sold in CA and NY in limited numbers, due to FLEET emissions standards. I do not know where the urban myth started that it is illegal to have a TDI in NY or CA or that they fail emissions tests, but it is not true.
    The air behind TDI is no more or less breathable than the gasoline vehicles I own (my opinion).
    Anyone who takes the time to research the FACTS can verify the timing belt, maintenance, and NY CA emissions status that I stated above.
  • moparbadmoparbad Member Posts: 3,870
    quote from Neal of NY-
    Having bought a 2001 Jetta GL TDI automatic on 3/30/2001 from Romano Ford-VW in Fayetteville, NY, I can state for a fact that you CAN but a new TDI in New York and register them without difficulty. I bought one of the first batch of 5 2001 TDI's to arrive at that dealership. Your sole difficulty will be finding the scarse TDI model of your particular desire. end quote-

    quote from Shawn of Moriches, NY-
    I've called the DOT and they have a preparred stament that the DOT of New York has no problem registering VW TDI's. end quote-

    You can register ANY U.S. spec VW TDI in ANY state... period. In 2001, VW has put a cap on the number of TDIs they'll sell in California and New York (and Mass. too maybe?) due to state regulations that would cost VW $ if their corp. fleet emission average passes above a certain point. Selling too many TDIs (as a percentage of ALL VW sales in a state) would raise their average, so VW has decided only to sell a fixed number of TDIs. In 2001, the cutoff for TDIs in CA was originally suppoosed to be 1500 cars, but was later revised downward to 800. I don't know what the '01 sales cutoff number is in NY, but I'd suspect it was a little less. end quote-
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    My information was based on 3 identical responses from NY DMV personnel about 6 weeks ago. If they were wrong, or if the policy changed, so be it. I still do not think VWs pass NY emissions. Indeed, I believe that when you get one inspected, you get a waiver, not a pass certificate. My dealer quotes for maintenance were from 2 dealers in northern VA. The fuel system servicing is recommended every 20k so only the first is free. The others were quoted to me at $150. Please check on the auto timing belt. I believe that this was a very recent change from VW, perhaps in line with the latest line of TDIs, which, by the way, have the head air bags standard and revised EPA highway automatic mpg figure of 44 vice 45. Sorry if I offended anyone. I love the car and may yet buy one. Just bought an Elantra GT and am now looking for a second really economical car on fuel.
  • moparbadmoparbad Member Posts: 3,870

    You still don't believe that TDI can pass emissions test in NY!

    Diesels are exempt from the test(all new vehicles are exempt also), so what test can they possibly fail?

    quote from the above link (which is the NY DMV Emissions Site)

    Q. What vehicles are exempt from the new program?

    A. Vehicles less than two model years old, or more than 25 model years old, diesels, electric vehicles, motorcycles and vehicles with historic or farm equipment registration are exempt.

    end quote-

    There is no "fuel system servicing" other than the replacement of fuel filter which is part number 1J0127401A and is $37.23 for the part.

    There is no change from VW on the replacement of timing belt on MK4(1999 to present) VW's with auto, it is at 40K, and this is not a change from earlier TDI's as the MK3(pre 1999) Jettas and Passats as they were all manual transmission.

    I am not personnaly offended, but why not let someone choose to like or dislike TDI's and diesels in general based on accurate information?

    another quote-

    Now, before I get too far, I know some car buyers may recall General Motors Corp.'s ill-fated diesel that was installed in some Oldsmobiles in the 1980s. Basically a gasoline engine that was converted to diesel, it stigmatized auto diesels in this country because of widely publicized problems and resulting lawsuits. end quote-

    TDI=it isn't an Oldsmobile diesel. It is a 40-50 MPG car, it has more noise at idle than gasoline engine, it has torque (1.9-liter TDI diesel engine is rated at 155 lb-ft of torque at a low 1900 rpm, while the 2.0-liter gasoline engine only offers 122 lb-ft at 2600 rpm), it lasts longer than gasoline engine, it costs about $1000 more than 2.0 gasoline equipped VW, resale value is very good but they can be hard to find new or used.

  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    Not looking to argue with you, since I may buy one! My understanding is that the reason diesel motor vehicle emissions testing is waived in NY is precisely because they don't meet existing NY motor vehicle standards. So rather than set specific diesel standards, NY decided to go with the waiver...this was explained to me by what seemed to be a very knowledgeable rep from NY DMV in the Albany office.

    VW in Alexandria, VA quoted me the price for the fuel system servicing. I know what the parts cost but many of us have no garage or the ability/facility to do our own work. Three VW dealers have told me that the TB interval for the auto was changed....I also believe this is posted on the VW TDI forum on vwvortex or some other site. Not questioning the lack of a TSB on it as it may apply only to later production TDIs and may not be retroactive. That is why I referenced the later production models with the revised highway EPA number. That could explain the lack of a TSB.

    I have a question for you. Is the turbocharger and injection system covered for the 10/100 or the 2/24?

    I fully agree with you about being accurate. The bottom line though is that mpg is not the only cost factor in determining whether or not a car is economical, which was what my original post was intended to answer. I dare say that an Echo would cost a lot less to maintain, drive and ensure over 100,000 miles than a TDI. The issue is whether you want to drive an Echo. For that matter, total cost of ownership of a gas VW vs the TDI might be the same over 100,000 if you buy the 2.0L. The initial cost is less, the discount from list probably greater, TB less often, etc. Then again, do you want an oil guzzling 2.0?

  • moparbadmoparbad Member Posts: 3,870
    Below is the information I found.

    This is the Limited Powertrain Warranty for all 1994 and newer VWoA vehicles (excluding Rialta and Eurovan):

    10 Year/100,000 mile coverage, whichever occurs first, for the first owner and registered immediate family members.

    5 Year/50,000 mile coverage, whichever occurs first, for subsequent owners.


    Cylinder Block
    Cylinder block and cylinder head includes all internal parts

    Repairs resulting from an outside influence such as damaged teeth due to a defective starter or clutch wear are not covered.

    Cylinder Head
    For defects in material of workmanship.

    Valve Train
    Includes valves, camshaft, timing gears, timing chains, and spur belt.

    Oil Pump
    For defects in material and workmanship.

    Water Pump
    For defects in material and workmanship.
    Note, slight seepage is normal and is not considered a defect.

    Water Pump Pulley
    Not Covered.

    G-Charger (Turbocharger)
    This item as an emission warranty component. See California emission component coverage section.

    Fuel System Controls
    Not Covered

    Injection Pump Not Covered. This item may be covered as a emission warranty component, See California emission component coverage section. Pumps must be repaired by an authorized Bosch Diesel Service Dealer.

    Intake Manifold
    For defects in material and workmanship.

    The above apply to the 10/100 warranty. The turbo is covered according to several VW dealers as it is considered an internally lubricated part.
    Several people worry that the turbo is covered only under the CA emissions warranty and have requested additional documentation. I have not seen, nor do I know of anyone obtaining additional docs. from VWoA or dealer.
    I do know that there have been turbo failures that were covered after the 2/24 warranty period.
    You will have to come to your own conclusion on the turbo warranty status.
    The injection pump is covered only under the 2/24 and not the 10/100 warranty. If I had an injection pump fail I would start to pray for divine intervention as it is a very expensive item, although it can be replaced by dealer, only Bosch supposedly has the skills to repair or rebuild them.

    I only trust what the dealer says when I can see in writing some documentation from VWoA so I know they are not lying or ignorant about what they are telling me.

    It is possible that at one time the replacement interval for the timing belt was 60K for auto, but I am 100% certain that the interval is 40K now. Replacement of timing belt is absolutely critical on the TDI as the motor is interference type and you will most likely have to replace head and possibly pistons if the timing belt breaks.

    I agree that the TDI is by no means the lowest cost per mile of ownership. This would only be true if gasoline goes even higher than it is now.
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    Thanks for the very informative post. It is just those potential repair issues that have me hesitating about the TDI. My 78 diesel Rabbit did reasonably well, but the mount supporting the dealer installed York A/C unit kept snapping due to the engine vibrations. I had the car for 150,000 miles. I needed 2 new or newer cars and just took a calulated risk and bought a new loaded automatic Elantra GT hatch for $16K. Got ABS, moonroof, traction control, mud flaps, and a few extra little goodies in addition to the standard leather, full power, fog lights, alloys, Michelins, cruise, AM/FM/CD, keyless entry, etc., etc. Equipment wise it can't be beat. Now we'll see if they make a good car that lasts a bit. Car #2 may very well be a TDI. Depends on what's left in the wallet. Thanks again.
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    Would you buy VW's extended warranty to cover these parts to 100,000 or is the cost too much for what you get? Are they even covered under Platinum or whatever it is?
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    Did you see the post on the mazda board of all things about VWs 02 warranty? 4 years/50k bumper to bumper and 5 years/60k engine and drivetrain. No more free maintenance for the first 24.
  • moparbadmoparbad Member Posts: 3,870
    The 2002 Warranty is Rumored to be:

    Vehicle Warranty (b2b): 4 yr/50,000 (wear and tear and adjustments excluded after 12 months/12,000 miles)
    Powertrain Warranty: 5yr/60,000

    Anti-Corrosion: 12 year unlimited mileage against corrosion perforation

    Roadside Assistance: 4yr/50,000 24 hour eoadside assistance

    Maintenance: free maintenance eliminated for 2002

    Only time will tell if this happens. VWoA is currently denying any change in warranty for 2002.

    As for an extended warranty, about $800 will buy a 10/100 diamond wrap from Warranty Direct which is represented as being an extension of bumper to bumper warranty to 10/100.
    The two items I think have the greatest possibility to fail on VW TDI are the MAF (mass airflow sensor) and the power window regulator.
    If the MAF or pwr. window regulator fail then I will attempt to get compensation from VWoA if I am in warranty or not.
    For someone who is concerned about VW reliability or someone who is uncomfortable doing basic mechanical work then the warranty could be a good deal. If for nothing else than the sense of security.

    The VW warranty is not worth the cost in my opinion as there are some very good aftermarket warranty providers with same coverage for less cost.

    Anyone willing to risk a Hyundai should be comfortable with VW. And I know that Hyundai has improved their quality greatly, not enough time has passed to tell how much though.

    While the Rabbits lasted forever, I am sure some people wished they would die so they had an excuse to get a new car.
  • wordman93wordman93 Member Posts: 36
    but I traded my 2000 Golf GLS TDI last week for a Jetta GLX. I love the power of the vr6 and all, but I miss my TDI. The gas mileage on this Jetta sucks (A). I've gone from filling up at the pumps once every week and a half to filling up once every five days! The TDI is a great engine that will last a long time. I would however purchase a extended warranty though. Mine paid for itself about two weeks before I traded it in. A relay went bad killing the glow plugs. It would've cost me $650.00 to fix with out the warranty.

    Also, I was never told of any 20k fuel service by the dealership, and $600 for a new timing belt is high. I may try to purchase another TDI soon. I just wish we could get the 150 hp TDI here in the States.
  • kjclowkjclow Member Posts: 29
    The main reason the the TDI is exempt from most state emmision tests is that it does not produce the same type of hazardous emmisions. The TDI is a fairly clean burning engine. What comes out of the exhaust are some NOx gases and large particulates. The large particulates are too big to cause any air pollution worries. A gas engine produces low level ozone producers and high level ozone depleaters, such as carbon monoxide. None of which are produced by the TDI. One statement that I heard, and am not willing to try, is that you can stay in a closed garage with the TDI running and live to tell about it. These engines are not like the city buses and the big rigs. After a year of driving, I have yet to see a smoke screen behind me as I pull away from the light.
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    So let me understand this correctly. You can now buy a TDI and register it new in NY? Is there any press release or NY DMV chapter and verse to cite? Thanks.
  • jazz15jazz15 Member Posts: 2
    You know what it's like. It's your first new car and you have to make it last, even beyond your car payment period. I know that no car is perfect and risk is inevitable.

    The goal is to have maximum performance with affordable maintainance. From what I understand, you spend $600 annually on a gas engine for tune-ups and such. What would the annual fee be on a TDI and on a gas (2.0L 115hsp)?

    My concerns on the TDI:

    1. the life span of the turbo....when it goes it costs about $4000 with labor How long should the turbo last?

    2. Someone has mentioned the injection pump, the heart of the engine. What is its average life span?

    3. Someone else above had a TDI for only a year and the relay killed the glow plugs. Is this common or is this a fluke car?

    4. What is your fuel system service fee annually?

    But I know the TDI has excellent mileage and diesel engines are in long lasting work vehicles. And I enjoyed the ride.

    Which one overall will have higher maintenance, the GLS TDI automatic or the GLS (2.0L) automatic? Which one will be the greater investment?

    I know the TDI has an injection pump, which is about $1600, whereas the gas GLS has a regular fuel pump. The TDI also has a turbo, which is very expensive to replace, but the service men (who work for the dealers) tell me that if you keep up with everything, that you should be fine. Can you confirm this?

    Please give guidance. Thank you.
  • pocahontaspocahontas Member Posts: 802
    While you're waiting here for a response, you may also want to ask (copy/paste) your question in one of our other active New Beetle discussions. To start, here's New Beetle, pricing & information). Good luck with your decision. :-)



    Hatchbacks/Station Wagons Message Boards

  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    I am going through the same thought process as you are. Here are my conclusions:

    1. The 2.0 may not be around too much longer, or may be relegated to the base GL model soon. Your call. It is a rather dated design and is known to burn oil. Many people I have talked to say get the 1.8T but then you have a turbo to deal with and premium fuel.

    2. I owned a Rabbit diesel. If diesel is in your blood (figuratively anyway) it is a great car to own and fun to drive. Otherwise, you do take a chance as you mention with some potentially huge repair bills, although many posters here and at vwvortex.com will tell you they are driving trouble free. Keep in mind that VW may change the 02 warranty from 10/100 to 5/60 and from 2/24 to 4/50 and eliminate the free 2/24 maintenance currently offered.

    3. Gas tune ups should not cost $600 for 100k.

    4. Diesel maintenance is generally higher...timing belt, fuel filter, synthetic oil requirement, etc.

    5. You might do better with a gasser. Looked at Celica for example? I own the new Elantra 5 door GT hatch and love it. Go see and drive one and look at the level of equipment you get including leather, 4 wheel disc ABS, traction control, roof, keyless entry, fog lights, alloys.....for around $16k. Best warranty in the industry too.

    Good Luck!
  • moparbadmoparbad Member Posts: 3,870
    I posted earlier that VW was going to change warranty for 2002. (See earlier post #18)
    It is now verified. The warranty will be 4yr/50K miles new car warranty, 5yr/60K miles powertrain, and no more free maintenance.
    Calling VWoA even last week and they denied that the warranty would change for 2002. What a bunch of liars.
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    So..knowing what you know about VWs, is the new warranty better or worse than the old one? Forget the free oil changes.....is the extra 26,000 miles of bumper to bumper worth more than 40,000 less on the engine/powertrain? Any idea on how this might affect the extended warranty prices? Thanks.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Member Posts: 2,228
    I would say the warranty is much better. VW's strong suit has always been their drivetrains, so lowering that warranty probably won't affect anything. However, they have traditionally had problems with their electricals. Gaining the extra warranty there will probably take away a lot of the complaints people have about VW since power window failure at 27K will no longer mean paying out of pocket and VW will have to improve their electrical components in order to minimize warranty claims.
  • mpgmanmpgman Member Posts: 723
    The only thing that would scare me is the drivetrain warranty on the TDIs. If the wrong thing goes on one of them and you have to pay for it, all the anticipated savings in mpg will go right down the drain.
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